Japan has quite a reputation of bringing us creative and interesting products, but this one is certainly a mind-blower: genetically modified chickens that lay disease-fighting eggs.
Fast & Co reports that Japanese researchers at the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) have been working on genetically engineered chickens that lay eggs containing drugs to fight diseases like hepatitis and cancer. They produced these chickens in an ongoing attempt to make the cost of drugs cheaper.
Here’s how the process works: The Japanese gene-editing technology is used on the chickens to make them produce “interferon beta, a protein related to the immune system that is a powerful tool in treating of skin cancer and hepatitis.” They then use those modified cells to fertilize eggs and produce hens that inherit those genes. After some cross-breeding, chickens that produce disease-fighting eggs are created.
The researchers working on this project are planning on selling this drug to pharmaceutical companies in order to continue studies on the product at a reduced cost.
Who knows? In a few years, cancer-patients could be prescribed a dose of eggs benedict.